Film Length: 114 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 16X9 Enhanced Widescreen (2.35:1)and
Full Frame versions
Subtitles: English, French. Portugese and Spanish
By all accounts I should have hated Road House.
For starters, I am no fan of Patrick Swayze. I am
also no fan of movies about rednecks who are unruley
towards women and like to pick fights in bars. So why
is it that I walked away with a warm and fuzzy
feeling about Road House? Well, rack it up
as one of those guilty pleasures that's pretty darn
Oh, sure, this movie isn't overly melodramatic, and
the dialogue is laughable, but the reason you want
to watch a film like this is for it's bombshell
blondes, gratuitous nudity and some greatly
choreographed ass-kickin' fist fighting.
By far, this is one of the best updated versions of
the old western where the good guy rides in to save
the townsfolk from one evil dude. In this case, the
good guy is Dalton (Patrick Swayze), known to be the
best head bouncer around. Dalton is hired by a man
named Frank Tilghman, (Kevin Tighe) who wants the
"cooler" to clean up his bar, the Double Deuce, which
has fallen prey to all sorts of rowdy lowlifes.
His new stint at the Double Deuce proves to be a
bigger challenge than originally thought. He soon
discovers that the town and its toughest customers
are run by a ruthless, scheming, and crooked town
boss named Brad Wesley (Ben Gazzara). Ben isn't
too happy with the club's new "Sheriff" and vows to
do whatever it takes to get him out of town -- dead
When things get really out of control, Dalton enlists
the help of his aging bouncer friend Wade (Sam Elliot),
who helps heat up the screen with more testosterone
than should be legally allowed in one film.
How is the transfer?
Rejoice fans of white trash -- this transfer kicks
a lot of ass! Like many of the recent catalog
releases from MGM, this transfer is superb. Let's
start with a picture that is very clean throughout.
Images are mostly very sharp and well detailed. The
film is extremely colorful, and even in the darker
smoke-filled multi-colored innards of the Double
Deuce bar, there is absolutely no smearing to be
seen. I saw no evidence of film grain nor video
noise. In short, this is a pretty damn good transfer.
Though not presented in true 5.1 surround, I was
shocked at the quality of the audio mix. There's
a lot of punch in this soundtrack starting with
full-bodied audio across the front channels with
nice distinctive stereo separation. Dialogue stays
pretty much in the center channel, only slightly
bleeding to the left and right. The rears do a heck
of a job not only supporting the film's original
music track, but the guitar-screechin' sounds of
the Jeff Healey Band. All of this is supplemented
with minimal LFE response. My only complaint
about the audio is that the band's music often
sounded like echo reverb in the rear channels, but
such is the limitations of the original recording.
Of course rednecks want to the picture to fill up
their television screen, so MGM has obliged to this
sect of the population by providing a dual-layered
DVD that contains both a WIDESCREEN and FULL FRAME
version of this film.
Other than that, the only Special Feature to be
found on this disc is the film's original
theatrical trailer. That's all folks!
Do I feel guilty about liking this guilty pleasure?
Heck No! I sort of feel proud that I have come to
a point in my life where I can just accept a movie
for what it is, and enjoy mindless entertainment
void of any moral value whatsoever. Perhaps I am
starting to mellow out in my middle-age after all.
Release Date: February 4, 2003
All screen captures have been further compressed.
They are for illustrative purposes only and do not
represent actual picture quality